Thursday, August 7, 2008

Saving For the Big One

As I’ve mentioned several times before, Jake is a Lego junkie. If he didn’t have to eat and sleep he would be building or creating with Legos 24 hours a day if I’d let him. He always has some Lego project set up on his desk in mid-build, waiting for the creative juices to continue flowing so that he can finish it at a later time, or in some cases, continually updating it as a forever-work-in-progress.

Jake is also a frequenter of He likes to watch the Lego-mation videos that people have created and posted, as well as examine the newest Lego products on the market. Because I don’t feel that my children need to have every toy ever created, he understands that he is just LOOKING at the new Lego products and will not be RECEIVING the Lego products.

A few weeks ago he discovered a new Star Wars Lego ship that had come out on the market in conjunction with the new animated Star Wars Clone Wars movie that is coming out. The V-19 Torrent looked pretty cool, but I wasn’t about to spend $50 on a Lego ship that, once taken apart, will never go back together again, but instead be incorporated into our Lego bucket. We have many ships that have met this demise…Star Wars fighters, Batmobiles, etc. For $50 I could buy him several sets of plain Legos for him to use in his general building projects or to combine with the deconstructed specialty items to create ships that even George Lucas would be envious of.

Having a summer birthday does come in handy…especially when it falls exactly six months from the night many celebrate the birth of a certain baby (did you know he was most likely born in the spring…more about that another day). Jake gets gifts exactly six months apart, nicely spacing out his present opening fun. (I don’t get that joy. My birthday is right near Christmas, lumping all of my gifts into one event. I’m not bitter at all.) This year he received a significant amount of birthday money. My one rule was that he wasn’t allowed to spend his money until he had written thank you notes to everyone, letting them know what he was planning to purchase with the money he had received. We compromised; I typed the “thank yous” and he agreed to 30-minutes of typing lessons each day (pretty good deal I think).

After all was said and done, he had just about enough for a nice Lego product. He decided that he needed to beef up his daily chore completion in order to earn the rest of the money needed for the V-19 Torrent. He chose the more difficult chores each day during our family meeting (earning him more money) and we decided that if all the daily chores were completed the kids could each earn a $.25 bonus. His has been earning about $3.50 a week, quickly meeting his goal and eagerly awaiting our next trip to Target.

Well, he got his wish on Monday and purchased the V-19 Torrent on sale at Target for $50. We spent the afternoon putting the ship together. He did all the constructing and I was the piece sorter. Jake is a throw-it-all-in-a-pile-and-fish-it-out kind of kid…that isn’t necessarily how I would have done it, but we found all the pieces and they all fit in the right places. He is pleased with is creation and has vowed not to disassemble it and put it with the bulk parts. He is taking extra care of it because he spent his own money on it.

I’m proud of him for saving his money for something he really wanted. I’m interested to see what he’ll decide to save up for next. I wonder if his chore completion will suffer because there isn’t currently a goal to save for. I guess we’ll see.

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